niche-full

So I had a baby last week.  Things have been rather wild and crazy around here.  And by “wild and crazy” I mean “sleep-deprived and spit-up smelling.”

It’s a good thing I have a new Sluiter Nation Recruit to share with you today!

The lovely Nicole is here today.

Admittedly I am a lurker of Nicole’s.  I love her writing, but I find myself wanting to comment “love it!” or “AGREE!” and while comment love is comment love, I always want to say something more meaningful.

And so I lurk.

But her words are so lurk-able.

You’ll see.

*************

So we have bloggers with a niche, and bloggers who build a community, but not Katie, no, Katie is building a nation. A whole nation that she recruits, handpicked, one by one. So I feel both honored and empowered to be here today, a part of her Wordy Nation, called The Sluiter Nation. 
Hi, my name is Nicole – Daughter, Wife, Mom, Friend … and I am a blogger.
My little corner of the world is called,

That is what it is called for now …  I want to change it so very much, but sadly, my given name is the name of a porn writer’s site – she uses words like animalistic. It just breaks my heart. Really.

I recently returned from an extravaganza called Blissdom, even Joe Jonas was there (he is legal now we were told, and that was weird) Afterwards, tired little bloggers spread across the land heading home mentally energized while physically exhausted, ready to take on the world (once they had had some sleep) Blissdom 2011 had been my first taste of a conference. Intimidated, I convinced a friend to head there with me, and watched the relationships unfold around me. Bloggy hierarchy appeared to be alive and well, and there were niches at every table.  It is important to figure out where you fit in sometimes, for instance, if you find yourself at a frugal blog table, tread lightly.  When someone has just said they can feed a family of four on $150 a week, because you are impressed and think that your husband would love for them to be your new best friend, you tell them that you spend more than that on wine … its time to change seats. Quickly.

But a year later, and feeling more of a conference veteran, these weekends have become a get away to reconnect with friends. Yes, friends, the people that lived for so long in my screen, have become a part of my real life.  I approached this year with a relax, enjoy, engage and it was ‘bliss’.  Blogging I have learned, like life, takes a little time to become comfortable in your own skin/blog.  And being comfortable in your own skin/blog also means that it has to be the real you, both in and out of your computer screen … because trust me, people will see right through you if you are not.

I look around the genre’s of writers that post their intimate details everyday, like they are side by side drinking coffee, sharing their most intimate secrets with a close friend. I am still not that kind of blogger.  I have stories of my own to share.  But sometimes those stories of my life, are not just my stories to tell.  They would involve my family, affect my marriage, could impact my children … and if our stories have an affect on the lives around us, is it always the right thing to share?  Do I feel the need to share for validation, or do I need to share for vindication of battles won. If I am only telling part of my story, then am I comfortable with who I am, the skin I wear?
I am. For now.

I do know that when I walked the long and lonely road of infertility, suffered miscarriages, moving back and forth across the country – my life would have been richer had the blogosphere been alongside of me. The stories shared on everything from postpartum depression to infertility, grief and illness are a blessing to so many.  The joys and achievements, lessons shared, of our peers helping us grow in our own lives. So it would seem to me, that no matter which part of yourself you choose to share with those around you, your words … are a gift.

In the meantime, I share my stories of motherhood and my life with MR51% who would have no part of being only the other half.  Most days its the mishaps of life as I find it, and sometimes the real stuff creeps in, because it is hard to be always happy go lucky in life – because sometimes life does hand us lemons ( we should go in search of tequila)

I am happy to have a little niche (that is niche like quiche and not nitch like … well, of course I wrote about that …) but yes, my little niche of the ramblings of my mind, a place that stores a few memories, a place to connect with my readers and a place to share with my friends – and those last two, I hope are one and the same …
Here are pics of some of my friends in Nashville, real friends thanks to blogging.
I have posts on adoption, infertility (Fertile Myrtle is lighter) and some of my tribulations like Foot in Mouth
I hope you come over to get to know me a little more … and each day there is just a little more.
Thank you to Katie for having me, thank you for reading today, and thank you to the blogging world for all it shares with me.
As always …

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About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.

Comments

  1. Such a pleasure to be here today, sadly I am of no assistance over here cleaning spit up and changing diapers which would probably be really useful … but at least I could fill a little space and hopefully Katie gets to take a nap! I can hope ….

  2. I hate I missed this amazing event with you. And, like you…I tread carefully when sharing our story. I don’t want to hurt anyone, but want to help those who are hurting. Your story…is full of love, from what I’ve read so far…andI love the way you…keep me smiling and refreshed through your funny comments! I do hope to meet you one day….sooner rather than later!

    • Rebecca, you are such a cheerleader and such a force of encouragement to all that are around you. One of these fine days, we will take this online girl crush and turn it into a full blown real life date 😉

  3. Thank you Katie for introducing me to yet another great blogger.

    I’m new to the blogging world and so appreciated the comment that it takes a while to feel comfortable in your own skin/blog. I’m in the middle of that phase right now. I’ve signed up for your blogs and look forward to taking some time to really look through your site and read your blogs. From the glancing I’ve taken, I have a feeling you’ll be seeing me as a regular.

    Thank you for being here today!

    • Hi Carrie, oh how it warms my heart to read your words here today. So glad we connected over here in this almighty nation … we can continue to be loyal subjects of all that is Sluiter, but take visitation in our own bloghomes 😉

  4. Niche like quiche – yes!

    You’re clearly comfortably in your own skin/ blog, and that’s wonderful, Nicole. I think I finally am too, after nearly a year. Sometimes it feels a little tight, but it’s mine and I love it.

    • Oh yes, the niche like quiche, now there was a tweet that carried around a room 😉
      And your skin, is allowed to be a little tight right now … there is a baby cooking .
      Mine, mine has no excuse for the tightness, except chocolate, probably chocolate …

  5. Oh I know that fine line of sharing too much; when your story blends with the story of another. I think that unless a person blogs anonymously, this is always a risk…

    Even when I am simply revealing something embarrassing or personal or silly about myself, I know there are members of my family and/or in-real-life friends who wonder what I’m thinking!

    “Aren’t you mortified?”

    Ummmm….no. Perhaps I’m less horrified than they would be because through blogging I’ve learned that everyone has moments like this; that I’m not alone. Perhaps I feel even BETTER about myself. I don’t know.

    What I do know is that I have loved getting to know you, Nicole; that I appreciate the support of your friendship despite the distance (physical) between us.

    I love that blogging collapses the miles with a click. And it’s like we’re together.
    A meeting of the minds, if not the body.

    XO

    • Oh your words dear Julie … always like music to my ears.
      I just know we will be great friends when we meet, and I will bring your towel and your margarita and you will sweep thro marathons and make us both proud. For I can be your fan and cheerleader both on and off the screen.
      I cannot wait for the day that our bodies meet too – no matter how sort of ‘women in comfortable shoes’ that sounds 😉

  6. So happy to see you here! 🙂 Also? I have a hard time with the Niche thing. I refer to myself as a “Seinfeld” blogger… the blog about nothing (but really, everything). You rock!

    • and happy to see you too.
      What an honor right? So thrilled to be here today, altho I have second guessed myself typing every word what with Katie being a teacher and all … keep thinking i may get detention 😉
      Mine too is somewhat about everything and that is good!

  7. I tread very carefully as well when it comes to sharing my stories. I often add my childhood anecdotes to my posts, since I don’t want to share too much about my own kids. As you so eloquently said, “my stories…are not just my stories to tell.” BTW, love your blog!

  8. Well. I’d love to just quote Julie c Gardner. Because I nodded along to her words, like I did to yours Nicole.

    I’m anon. And lay it all out there!

    And congrats Katie!

  9. Such wise words again from you, Nicole. I enjoyed this post so much. I feel I’m still growing into my skin/blog and hope that it will fit me well soon enough. I’m so glad we finally had a change to meet and that I got to share your wisdom. 🙂
    Katie, I’m new here… first off, congrats on your new bundle of joy. I will take some time to snoop around subscribe!!!

    • Morning … thank you for coming to visit me over here. Katie is a beautiful writer and you will settle in very quickly, I promise. (and I even met her in real life at Blogher, lucky me!)
      I am so glad we were able to hang the other day, so look forward to doing it again … but wisdom … now that I don’t know so much 😉

  10. LOVE reading you here, sweet friend!

    I adore the way you share your stance, tell your story, while holding the stories of those you love at the highest value.

    So proud to call you a friend.

    xo

  11. Hi there ladies! I love the subject of conferences . . . I want to go to one but need to wait until the baby (baby #4) is at least a year. I appreciate reading the experiences of others though! I feel like I’ll be somewhat prepared if I ever go.

  12. Hi, Nicole! Lovely seeing you over at Katie’s. I’ve been dying to go to a conference, as we have discussed, but I don’t know what niche (not nitch) I fall into or who hitch (not hiche) up to when I’m there. Whatever you choose to share from your story, it’s all good stuff!

  13. I love seeing you here and everywhere, my friend. I must say, I agree with you, as usual. You do need to be comfortable in your own skin and comfortable with what your sharing. When I first started blogging about infertility, I had this insane notion that people would think I was just seeking attention. Crazy, I know. But my words help others, and their words help me…and we are all in this together.

  14. It has taken me a while to pop back over, but I am glad to read your words here a second time! 🙂

    I found your blog last year and loved the way you shared your stories….then met you in person and swoon….you are as real as your stories…

    I am so proud (and lucky!) to call you friend.
    xoxo

  15. Oh Nicole, you write like I think…saying everything as everyone stands there open mouthed..I mean that in the best possible way. you are simply incredible and I WONDERFUL addition to the NATION.

    Even though I didn’t meet you until this past year, my life is richer, funnier, sweeter with you out here in the blog world with me. My arms are aching to hug you and my laugh is burning to spill over yours as we chat.

    I’ve gone from infertile to pregnant, to bed rest, to twins, to becoming a mommy and then embracing writing….it seems our paths are so similar and I like that…a comparison to you is high praise. 🙂
    xoxo

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